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Topic Flutter/Accordian book w/a twist SWAP!!! Go to previous topic Go to next topic Go to higher level

By luci_mama On 03/19/04  

ETA 3/21: It's become a swap. Anybody wanna join in, post!

Original inspiration (and see link in later post), which, originally, I couldn't figure out how to do:

I googled "flutter book" and got something else, and the matches for "Accordian book"+ twist were equally inaccurate.

Ursonate? You seem to always know these things.....?


ETA same day as original post: Ohmygods, I figured it out! It's so COOL!! (See below post!)

So. Nevermind!

Unless anybody else wants to glow about how cool these are, and knows of some sites where I can see more ... or anybody wants to do a swap of these. Wouldn't that be fun?

By ursonate On 03/20/04  

I've always hated the way the pages are coded on that site. I can't tell what's going on there. What is it? I think I've heard of concertina bindings referred to as flutter books, but I'm not 100% sure on that.

By Aryn On 03/20/04  

Well, for future reference, I've heard these sorts of books referred to as flexigons. There's a bunch of different types.

By ursonate On 03/20/04  

Is that what that was? Was I looking at the right site?

By Aryn On 03/20/04  

I'm not sure, maybe I was confused. That site has too many pictures on top of each other for me.

Side note: Ursonate, I just peeked at your site and I saw that you took a class with Esther Smith. I took a class with her last semester!

By Katrin On 03/20/04  

I googled "flexigon" (it said, "Did you mean 'flexagon'?") and found this site for an instructional video on how to make a cootie catcher - pretty neat.>

Googling "flexagon" got lots more results, including this page that seems to have instructions for the book-thing (scroll down about halfway).>

By luci_mama On 03/20/04  

Okay, I google'd both flexigon and flexagon, too, and I saw lots of things based on triangles, but I didn't find much of anything based on squares, and what I did wasn't this.

Here's the single image that I was looking at on the site above:

And here's how I figured it out to work. Looking at this image for an example, crease a piece of paper so there's a grid of four squares x four squares. (If you use an 8.5x11, you get rectangles instead of squares, but that doesn't matter ... the point is, you've got 16 boxes of uniform shape in four rows of four.) For my explanation purposes, label each box with a number, starting at the top left, 1,2,3,4 in the first row, 5,6,7,8 in the second, continuing until you get to the bottom row, which will be 13,14,15,16. Okay? (If that isn't clear, looking at this picture of Patti's, the palmistry stamp is box 1, the romantic pic of the girl & guy is box 2, the tree woman is box 3, the square in the corner with the book cover attached is box 4, and the "I see passion" is box 5. Got it?)

Use a scissors to start a squared-off spiral shape cut, starting at the bottom of box 4 (between box 4 and 8) and cutting straight across that line, stopping at the intersection where you reach box 1 and 5. Then, start cutting straight downward, between box 5 and 6 (Patti's "I see passion" and "Sweet Dreams"), then between 9 and 10. At the bottom of box 10, stop cutting downwards and start cutting to the right again, between box 10 and 14, continuing between 11 and 15, then turning up again, cutting between 11 and 12, then turning AGAIN and cutting along the top of box 11, between 11 and 7. When you look at it, you've kinda cut a squared-off spiral, right?

Then,, starting at one end or the other, simply start folding between the squares/boxes to make sort of an accordian fold, back and forth, or up and down when you get to the appropriate points (this will make sense when you actually start folding).

Patti's example as shown in the link in this post is actually the back side, I figured out after I posted last night. The front isn't shown in full, but several of the painted boxes/spreads shown on that page I originally linked are from the "right side" of this piece. (You can see a bit of the "antique map" book covers in the backgrounds of some of the pix.)

I decided, after playing with it awhile late last night, that it's a little wierd, but also fun for images, kinda collage-y, kinda altered-book-ish. Doesn't really make sense for text, partly because of the twists and turns. (I could be proved otherwise.)

And I still think it would be a very fun Glitter swap, if anyone's interested.

And now my boys are demanding my attention, so I gotta go. Oh yeah, the "flutter book" idea, as I understand it, defines anything folded accordian style so that on a windy day, all the pages could flutter out of the book in the wind. *shrug*


By ursonate On 03/20/04  

Yep, Esther's cool.

This is definitely not a flexagon. It's kind of similar to a simple book, but has way more folds. If I knew where my syllabus was, i would tell ya what Esther calls it, but I think she covers that the same day she does accordions.

eta: Now that i think about it, it really is just an accordion. I'm suddenly recalling a book artist that did one that wasn't based on a single sheet of paper, but had folds going in every which direction. So maybe accordion with a twist is the most apt description even though it's not usable for the purposes of search.

By Katrin On 03/20/04  

Swap! Swap! Swap!

By misshawklet On 03/21/04  

who's this esther woman?

By luci_mama On 03/21/04  

Okay, let's call it a swap. I'll change the name of the threadline, and we'll see who bites.

By Katrin On 03/21/04  

YAY! I was hoping someone else would volunteer to Julie* this thing, since my organizational skills are lacking.

I wanna be in! In fact, I'm working on my flutterbook design as we speak. What info do you need from me? By the way, "flutterbook" is a ton of fun to say. Flutterbook.

*(verb) As in "Julie McCoy, your cruise director" - to take charge, spearhead, organize.

By luci_mama On 03/21/04  

"Julie" it, that's good!

Here's a page with cutting and folding instructions, and some alternates. I think I might like the non-spiral example better, but I haven't actually cut up a sample yet to try it.

Anyone else interested in a swap?

By Katrin On 03/23/04  


C'mon, any takers for this? I've already started on my flutterbook. I can always make 'em for different purposes, of course, but a swap would be so fun. I'd love to see what other people come up with.

By misshawklet On 03/23/04  

when is the deadline to finish it? I'd like to do a swap but I myself am swamped with things now.

By lizzymahoney On 03/23/04  

I'm interested. Also somewhat swamped but sketched out a few diagrams and doodles last night.

By luci_mama On 03/23/04  

Hmmm. Deadline?

I was just waiting to see if anybody really wanted to do it. But now that we've got more than just me and Katrin ...

Let's say this:

Deadlines: Join by March 30 (post here AND email me with your Glittername and snailmail address at luci <at> onehotmama <dot> zzn <dot> com)
I'll match up folks and ***publicly post the matches*** to avoid flaking! I'm serious about this: I really don't wanna mess with flakes, so if you're not gonna do it, then don't sign up!
Mail the finished piece by April 30 (a month should be plenty of time, right? And that should be pre-final exams and post-Easter holidays....).

Project: Either a spiral-cut or other sort of accordian/flutter book ... Do what moves you

Theme: Inspired by another post of mine where I was suggesting themes.... Illustrate one of your favorite quotes or poems! (Be sure to post attribution -- who said/wrote it -- AND sign your work! Who knows who among us might be famous someday, and we can all be proud to own a first edition!)

Howzat? Now. Who's up to join us?

By misshawklet On 03/23/04  


By ursonate On 03/23/04  

(Esther K. Smith teaches an artists' book class at Cooper Union continuing ed. She also operates a press with her husband. Info can be found at

By campgrl On 03/24/04  

ok, im in. but it is my first time to swap. could you send me all the info that i might need to be a good swapper?

By luci_mama On 03/24/04  

I've gotten two e-mails, hoping for a few more.

And yes, I'll post swap rules when I have a bit more time to do so. In the meantime, if you like, just search Glitter for "swap" and "flake" to get a feeling for what happens if you sign up for a swap and then DON'T send what was promised! (That's the key!)

More later,


By Maisymae On 03/24/04  

hey Luci Mama
I would be interested in this as well as my DD.I can't email you because my computer doesn't like your addy. my email is in my profile.

By lizzymahoney On 03/24/04  

emailed you, luci. I am definitely up for this.

By ursonate On 03/25/04  

I was just flipping through Cover to Cover and indeed the correct term for this kind of book is Flutter Book. Who knew?

By luci_mama On 03/25/04  

Thanks for the confirmation, Ursonate. Wanna join us in a swap, or are you too busy? (Dare I ask how the job hunt is going?)

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